Home > Runs & Races

Eilish McColgan storms to course-record-smashing win at London’s Big Half

Sir Mo Farah led the men in his third win at The Big Half

Eilish McColgan (Scotland) sets course record at 2022 London Big Half Photo by: James Rhodes

Eilish McColgan has done it again. At The Big Half 21.1K in London on Sunday, McColgan determinedly chased down victory in 67 minutes, 34 seconds, knocking over two minutes off of Charlotte Purdue‘s course record of 69 minutes, 51 seconds. McColgan was followed by Purdue in 70:15 and Samantha Harrison in 70:22.

Scotland’s McColgan, who withdrew on Friday from a much-anticipated 2022 London Marathon debut due to a condition called rebound hypoglycemia, left fans with no doubt as to her running ability. Her victory caps off a remarkable season for the athlete, including Commonwealth Games gold at 10,000m and a new British half-marathon record of 67:26.

The 2023 London Marathon returns to its regular time slot in April, so McColgan will not have to wait an entire year for her London Marathon debut.  “It is disappointing and if it was up to me I would probably try and batter on, muscle through, but I know that is my heart speaking. The sensible decision is to get everything right for April,” she told the press.

British running legend Mo Farah ran to his third win at The Big Half in 61 minutes, 49 seconds, in what was only his second race of the season. In May, Farah lost a 10,000m race to amateur runner Ellis Cross, sparking rumours of retirement. He announced his intention to return to the TCS London Marathon in July, and quelled some of the talk around his career with Sunday’s performance, breaking away from the pack with three miles to go. Farah was followed by Jack Rowe in 62:04 and defending champion Jake Smith in 62:10.

Mo Farah London The Big Half
Photo: James Rhodes

Farah, who has gone back and forth between the marathon and the track in recent years, won Olympic gold in both the 5,000m and 10,000m in 2012 and 2016 and is a six-time world champion. “It’s been a long journey back! Amazing to win today in my home town London,” the athlete shared on Instagram. “Now back to training camp for TCS London Marathon in four weeks.”

Farah recently revealed that he was a childhood victim of human trafficking. In a documentary aired on the BBC in July called The Real Mo Farah,  Farah explained that he was brought to the U.K. illegally as a child and forced to work as a domestic servant when he was nine. “What saved me, is what made me different than everyone else,” Farah says. “I could run.”

Farah holds the record for the fastest half-marathon by any British athlete, recording a time of 59:32 at the Lisbon Half Marathon in 2015. The 2022 TCS London Marathon on Oct. 16 will be his first competitive marathon since 2019.